Yesterday I had the chance to catch up with Mike Lowe from Fox 6 Milwaukee on the various reports circling about on Medicaid/BadgerCare this week. If you haven't seen it yet check it out.
At issue was the fact that the Dept of Health Services released word that the state Medicaid budget shortfall was $93 million, just under what the state estimated it would save in state spending ($119 million) if Wisconsin were to accept the federal funds for BadgerCare. On top of that, a new report was released by the Council of Economic Advisers showing that human and economic impact state by state of this failure to accept the federal funds.
“It continues to show that it was a terrible decision, and one we can reverse at any time,” Kevin Kane with Citizen Action of Wisconsin said.
Kane researches health policy and is an advocate for expanding coverage.
“It’s a huge missed opportunity, just like the name of the report, and we’re still debating this because the question’s not going away,” Kane said.
Since these funds can be accepted at any time, issue really won't be going away anytime soon. More and more states are changing their mind and accepting the federal Medicaid funds. And here at home citizens are going to get more chances to speak out on this. The story above ended with the fact that citizens of Milwaukee county will get a chance to weigh in this November with a referendum on accepting the funds for BadgerCare. And the good news is that they are not alone, already Eau Claire county and Dunn county have it on the ballot too, and we expect more to come.